F250 vs F350: What’s The Difference?

Are you in the market for a new truck? Sick of how your 1/2 ton truck tows? 1/2 ton trucks drive and tow much different than a 3/4 or 1 ton truck. Many 3/4 tons and 1 tons come with a diesel engine which produces way more torque than a gasoline engine, making towing much easier. Either way, more than likely you’ve looked at an F250 or F350. What is the difference, and do you really need a 1-ton truck?

F250 vs F350: Engine and Transmission

Both the F250 and the F350 are available with gas or diesel engines. Most are equipped with the diesel because it is more economical and hauls/tows better. Both the F250 and F350 are also available with both an automatic, and manual transmission. So what’s the drivetrain difference? There isn’t one. The F250 and F350 share the exact same drivetrain.

F250 vs F350: Axles

Depending on which year you Super Duty you’re looking at, the front axle may be a Dana 50 or Dana 60. Older F250s and F350s use the Dana 50, which is an excellent axle. Newer F250s and F350s use the Dana 60 which is slightly beefier than the Dana 50. All years of the SRW (Single Rear Wheel) F250 and F350 use the Ford/Sterling 10.75. The F350 gets a slightly larger center section, otherwise, it’s the same as the F250’s rear axle. All years of the dually receive the Dana 80. Basically the only difference is the SRW F350’s larger center section.
You can read more about this in our Dana 44 vs Dana 60 article.

F250 vs F350: Suspension

All years of Super Duty trucks are available with heavy duty springs and standard springs. Both the F250 and the F350 have optional overload springs. The F350’s leaf springs are slightly stiffer, but it’s such a small difference you probably wouldn’t notice on the road. The F350 has stiffer springs up front as standard, the F250 has those same springs as an option. Something that surprised me is that both of these trucks come with factory blocks in the rear. The F250 is equipped with a 2.5″ block, which lifts the rear up to help the truck sit level whilst towing. The F350 comes factory with a 4″ rear block. The bigger rear block on the F350 gives it a slightly higher tow rating.

To put it simply, the F350 has marginally stiffer springs, and a 4″ block compared to the F250’s 3.5″ block.

F250 vs F350: Which One is Better?

Something I didn’t mention above is the fact that some states will consider the F350 to be a commercial vehicle. This will make your insurance and registration costs go up. If you live in a state where that is not the case, I would say get an F350. The slightly stiffer springs will make towing a little bit nicer. Prices for both the F250 and F350 are nearly identical, so there’s really no reason not to go with the F350.

About Bryce Cleveland 249 Articles
Bryce founded Dust Runners Automotive Journal in 2014 as a way to write about the cars he found interesting. When he's not writing for Dust Runners he's writing for Power Automedia as a freelancer. He currently drives a 2015 Fiesta ST and absolutely loves it.

6 Comments

  1. Best info on this subject I have seen after looking a lot.
    Seems like not a lot of difference to account for the differences in GVWR.
    F250 = 10,000 F350 =14,000
    I have a 2016 f250 SD Diesel. I want to pull a 5th wheel
    My problem is allowable pin weight as calculated below.
    pin wt 1700 = gvwr 10000 – truck wt 7800 – contents 500
    Pretty low and eliminates a lot of trailers.
    Some people say get a big trailer and don’t sweat it. That ok or I should beef up the springs?

    • I’d do the dually with such a long heavy load….the ass end of both the f350 single wheels I drive likes to walk when I have to brake hard. Much safer.

  2. This is by far the best article I have read regarding the subject. I am not a mechanic and all the numbers thrown around often confuse me. I just wanted to know what was the best choice to haul a 35 foot fifth wheel. You broke the information down to simplistic terms that even my wife could understand. I am going with a used 2015 F350 dually. Much appreciated and looking forward to reading more articles from you. GO BIG BLUE

  3. I have a 2015 F250 Super Duty SRW. I opted for the King Ranch interior. I did not want the DRW because this is going to be my daily driver and parking could be dicey. I pull a very large fifth wheel RV (42.5 feet long and weighing in at almost 20,000 lbs.). The pin weight is around 3800 lbs. I had a Timbren Suspension Enhancement installed that increased my payload capacity to 6100 lbs. Along with the electronic trailer sway control, I have absolutely no problem towing that big of a trailer. I also benefit from a nicer highway ride when running without a load. Just make sure you get the tires that can handle the weight.

  4. I will be buying my truck down the road to haul a light weight fifth wheel (14k lbs, 41′). I go back and forth, either an F-350 dually or an F-250. I can’t seem to come to a decision. I read and heard both pros and cons. I’ve heard “buy a F-350, no matter what. Then I hear F-350 will be too much and it rides best loaded, but not good when unloaded. I heard F250 will have better fuel mileage when not hauling and a smoother ride. Here’s the big picture, this vehicle will be our only wheels, hauling or not. I also have to contend with comfort because my wife has fibromyalgia and I have back issues, there for it’s imperative to get the right pickup for us the first time. Any thoughts on this? As a PS, this truck will be a post 2017.

    • For your lower back and wife’s condition, you can get the heated/cooled seats on Lariat, King Ranch and Platinum.

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